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Implementation Guide ON YER’ BIKE



All around the world, especially in large cities, cycling is fast becoming the mode of transport of choice. Cheap, unlimited mileage and much healthier for both the individual and the environment means more and more people are taking to the roads on two wheels. Although these big cities are beginning to invest in schemes designed to promote and improve cycling there are still many possibilities to improve. Although in London the new cycle hire scheme has been created to get more people on bikes, little has been done to improve the experience once they are on them. Therefore I am proposing a new system that will give people the

support they need when negotiating Londons busy warren of streets. Cycle Line is a new infrastructure aimed specifically at cyclists finding their way in the city. It will work as an organic wayfinding system exploiting peoples current wayfinding knowledge of the capital city. By using the familiar knowledge of the underground map and the locations it links up en route, the system hopes to not only get people above ground and onto bikes but create safe and routes and journeys partially based on peoples knowledge of negotiating London by tube, familiar to residents and tourists alike. This booklet goes on to lay out the foundations of the scheme.



The Current Situation Cycle Infrastructure in London

The recent trend in environmental awareness has seen many cities attempting to promoting cycling as an alternative yet feasible means of universal transport. London’s recent implementation of the Barclays Cycle Hire scheme is an example of this. Although providing 300+ docking stations all over the city, little effort has been put into the overall infrastructure to assist wayfinding, it is more a case of providing bikes to those who know exactly where they’re going or have no specific

route or destination. These will be supplemented with a series of Cycle Superhighways, however these are mostly routes linking the outer boroughs to the edge of The City meaning travelling across the city or anywhere outside its centre will be left totally unassisted by this system. The TfL has also released a series of 14 maps covering the whole of London showing all cycle lanes and ‘quieter routes… recommended for use by other cyclists’. However the size of these maps, the amount of information they present, and the fact that there are no connected routes means any route would have to be memorised, street by street,

prior to setting off. As it is generally believed that any memorised journey can only be remembered entirely if it has only around three way points, a street-by-street journey, with no additional signage, would be very tricky over any reasonable length. The only other option left for cycling across the city comes down to using general traffic signage. The problem for this is not only does it not highlight particularly unfriendly cycle-streets, but it will also be void of the freedoms of cycling over normal road traffic. Potential shortcuts or scenic routes will end up missed while the cyclist follows the rest of the smoggy traffic. Cycle Superhighways serve those travelling into the city from outer boroughs well, however once in the centre, or if the journey is across rather than into town, cyclists are left with little assistance.

The current cycle guides are overpowering and complicated, let alone have little signage to compliment them in the street.

The cycle hire scheme is a good means to promote cycling in the city, however little has been done to help cyclists then find their way and get the most out of their journey.

General road traffic signs offer cyclists little to encourage the benefits of cycling over automobile. Shortcuts, off-road and scenic routes are great benefits that are overlooked.


An instantly recognised British icon. Most people often know Londons layout through this semantic map rather than its true geography and therefore I suggest capitalising on this fact when developing a wayfinding system for cycling.

The Solution

A new cycle infrastructure for London

Geographical Tube Map

Cycle Line is a brand new information system for cyclists to find their way around the complex city of London. The system essentially brings the underground tube system above ground and adapts it to follow along recommended cycle routes that are either ‘signed for use by cyclists’ or ‘quieter routes… recommended for use by other cyclists’ by the TfL. The London Underground Map is one of the most widely recognized maps in the world, and its stations are the most widely recognized reference points in the city. Both tourists and locals have a mental map of their most used stations, and also their nearby attractions, relative to one another and can easily find their way around the city via the Underground. However, over-ground wayfinding

When laid out geographically the tube lines can act as routes to be followed from location to location, changing lines as and when. The cyclist will only need to remember a couple of changes to navigate the largest part of their journey, and will therefore be able to do so with ease.

TfL Cycle Guide

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Her Majestys Treasury

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Queen Victoria Memorial

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Wellington Barracks

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The Home Office

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Westminster Abbey


Buckingham Palace


Belgrave Square

Ministry of Defence

Downing Street a n k m en t

Queen Elizabeth Gate


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Rose Garden

Banqueting House

Guards Memorial

Marlsbourough House

Ministry of Defence

Horse Guards Parade

Westminster Big Ben

Houses of Parliament

The Tube Verses Cycling Travelling from Westminster to Hyde Park Corner by tube (in grey) and cycling (in pink). The underground journey misses the opportunity to enjoy the parks as well as physically travelling further and requiring a change. The cycling journey is more direct as well taking advantage of the bicycles opportunity to travel on off-road routes.

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Rather than create a brand new network of cycle lanes, the ‘tube lines’ will be adapted to correspond with TfLs Cycle Guide which highlights recommended quieter roads for cycling. Therefore although not all sections will have a sectioned off cycle lane, they will be guaranteed to be safe an quiet.



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The London Tube Map

Westminster Bridge

in London becomes much more complex. It’s busy roads and complex street layout mean trying to find your way on the road becomes rather difficult, let alone dangerous. While many people may know how to get from Westminster to Hyde Park Corner on the tube, only by changing at Green Park, by following Cycle Line’s they can enjoy the same, short route however being able enjoy St James’s and Green Park as well as passing Buckingham Palace en route. With a shortcut though Green Park, it is a much more pleasant, let alone shorter, route avoiding the waiting, overcrowding and inflexibility of underground travel. This simple example will hopefully demonstrate the ease and safety of cycling in the city and maybe encourage those regularly commuting by tube to adopt the more pleasant and healthier option of cycling, as well as guiding tourists efficiently and safely.



Implementation How the system works

A Brief Example Of The Range Of Signage 1 Street Sign

2 Shortcut Off-Route

3 Junction Map

Modified with coloured dots to show when that part of a street is on a Cycle Line.

Shows a shortcut to a popular destination that skips part of the Line and the location where it will join back in.

Available at busy junctions to break down the different directions and show whats near by, quickly assisting with any confusion.

4 Large Direction Pointer

5 Orientation Hub

To give a quick description of whats nearby in different directions. It is big enough to give the most important information while in motion.

Delivering a wealth of information on surrounding area, the current Cycle Lines and those over the rest of London.

The system shall consist of a selection of signage and floor markings showing the routes directions, nearby attractions both on and off route, as well as shortcuts, scenic routes and other information valuable to the cyclist in motion. This signage will also be backed up by a series of orientation ‘Hubs’ which will be placed near all major attractions and city features, tube stations and anywhere else that is appropriate for a cyclist to stop

and assess the development of their journey. These will assist those nearing the end of a long journey, needing to locate a small side street away from any of the main routes or act as a starting point for tourists to plan their route without a personal handheld map, or just offer an example of what can be explored nearby. This should all contribute in the organic development of any journey, through the process of finding a rough example of a journey by locating the nearest Cycle Line, linking the required routes via ‘changes’ where two lines cross, and finalizing the last part of the journey away from the Lines if or when required. All the while, along route their will be opportunity to cut out certain sections of a cycle line if appropriate or offer alternative scenic routes though parks or along the Thames for instance.

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London Wide Map An overview of the whole system

The initial point of contact with the wayfinding system should be the London wide, ‘alternative tube map’. This all of the routes in central London with real geography, rather than the schematic tube map, however it is also tailored to the specific streets to show all opportunities to change lines and any potential shortcuts. One large difference from the underground map is that no stations are highlighted, this is because the flexible nature of cycling means routes can be joined or left whenever the cyclist desires, unlike on the tube where there are only specific opportunities to do so. This renders the stations themselves redundant and therefore the focus now becomes specific neighbourhoods

in the city. Therefore these, along with the Thames and notable parks act as the main reference point on the large sale map. This map is then always backed up by a series of borough wide street maps that can be used for short to medium length journeys and therefore for longer journeys this larger map will show the length of the Cycle Lines across a series of boroughs to then be finalized with another street map to navigate to the exact location at the other end of town. These maps will be included on all Hubs as well as hand held maps to be referenced for prior planning or whilst en route.

London Wide Map Layout The Lines are all drawn to the nearest cycle friendly road in order to demonstrate where it may double-back on itself, in order to pass a particular location. Shortcuts can then be planned before hand, or just taken advantage of when the signage suggests.




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St James’s Park

The Home Office

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Westminster Abbey



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Houses of Parliament

Borough Wide Map Layout

Deans Yard



This much more detailed map shows all of the individual streets and cycle paths so the user can get a much better impression of the surrounding area and can plan more precise routes.

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London Aquarium



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Foreign Office

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The Borough wide maps offer much as showing further potential shortcuts more detailed information on their on busier or slightly more dangerous W surrounding areas. As well as the exact aterl main roads for the advanced cyclist. oo Ro Along side these aspects all Cycle Line routes, these also offer all ad Shell other recommended cycleCenter roads to other notable features of the city allow the cyclist to plan any specific are shown, parks and the river, all London Eye shortcuts, orJubilee alternative routes. All major tourist attractions and places Gardens of this is atop a fell street map of the of interest and tube and train area allowing the initial or final offstations allowing users to plan their route sections to be planned as well Waterloo day, even beyond the cycling.





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Banqueting House

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Orientation Hubs The main point of contact

Hub Location Showing the current street, neighbourhood, postcode and the Cycle Lines that run through it.

Borough Wide Map Showing the local area in high detail. The map reaches as far as a reasonable cycle journey but not so far as any specific details may be forgotten.

The Hubs will act as orientation and information points both on- and off route. As mentioned these will feature at all notable points of interest, tube stations, near extensive bike racks and anywhere else where someone is likely to start or end a journey. The main feature will be the street map, with a radius of a few miles allowing the user to plan any short, off-route sections of journey to an obscure location such as a personal residence. It will also highlight the exact location of any nearby features, offer ideas of areas to go and explore, show near by ‘changes’ or just find ones exact location if slightly lost.

This will be complimented by the large scale map to get the user pointed in the right direction for longer journeys or again locate scenic areas or changes. As well as mapping the Hubs will offer more localized information. Immediate location information such as exactly where it is, routes its on, postcode (as another point of quick reference). It will also have a brief description of the area and its history, as well as notable local features, quick ‘left-or-right’ directions for immediately nearby attractions so those nearby need not fully dismount and consult the street map.

London Wide Map Quick Reference To give a quick pointer as to what features are down the road to the left or right of the hub.

To give a wider perspective on the Cycle Lines across London for planning much longer journeys.

Local Information A brief description of the local area and what it has to offer nearby, as well as more general information to do with the Cycle Line system and cycling in the city.



Directional Signage KEEPING YOU ON TRACK

The Hubs will then be linked up with a series of signage and floor markings. The signage will range from quick and small signs purely highlighting the coloured route the cyclist is on and the direction their heading, through highlighting shortcuts and their outcomes as well as other alternative routes, to larger, more informative, but not essential signs at stopping points such as junctions and traffic lights. As mentioned before, the whole system aims to organically blend in to journey planning in the city and therefore to prevent the Basic Directional Sign Simplest sign to demonstrate the direction of the Cycle Line. The colours denote which route it is and the letters highlight the direction headed, Eastbound in this example.

information overload of signage in urban areas, where appropriate the signage shall be as small as possible to prevent any confusion for other road users yet still be recognisable for the cyclists using them. In its most basic form the signage will consist of the coloured route it is signposting, the overall direction of that route (e.g. Eastbound, Northbound, etc.), and the direction that the route is immediately turning. Beyond this, signage either pointing towards the nearest Cycle Line, be it a shortcut from or to or just from an off-route location shall contain the Shortcut Going Off-Route Shows a shortcut to a popular destination that skips part of the Line and the location where it will join back in.

Via Notable Location

Off-Route Signage

When a Line is travelling past a particularly notable feature or location to act a warning/reminder.

Points in the direction of the nearest section of Cycle Line, Also stating the specific location of where it will be joined.

same but with the addition of stating whereabouts it will be joining that Cycle Line (e.g. Shortcut to Victoria), so the cyclist won’t miss any section of the route they may require. Finally, the larger signage, containing informative, but not essential information will appear at stopping points such as junctions and traffic lights. This is because the cyclist may not always have the opportunity to stop or doing so may be dangerous, the lights are green for instance, and therefore may miss any essential directional information. However, information on the distance to certain points on the current Line, or quick maps of the layout of a complicated junction ahead for instance may prove useful but again not essential.

Attractions Signs All attractions are already well signposted on the roads so this is reasonably unnecessary, however there will be some locations where the benefit of travelling by cycle will open new shortcuts or routes, these will be simply demonstrated like these examples.



Large Direction Pointer (Left) To give a quick description of whats nearby in different directions. It is big enough to give the most important information while in motion.

Route Markers On the large direction pointer the Cycle Line dots are stacked in order to be seen from a distance and at speed. However the smaller signs are designed to be read at a standstill, therefore they are horizontal to keep the size of the sign smaller and less obtrusive for other road users.

Additional Signage

Useful information assisting the journey There will also be some larger signage, containing informative, but not essential information will appear at stopping points such as junctions and traffic lights. This is because the cyclist may not always have the opportunity to stop or doing so may be dangerous, the lights are green for

instance, and therefore may miss any essential directional information. However, information on the distance to certain points on the current Line, or quick maps of the layout of a complicated junction ahead for instance may prove useful but again not essential.

Locator Stating the current location of the sign by street and neighbourhood as well as the current route and the direction headed.

Directions Each potential direction shows nearby features in order of hierarchy, attractions, neighbourhoods, boroughs and overall direction. This is followed by the nearest changes of Line which will be complimented by further signage when nearer.

Junction Map (Left) Available at busy junctions to break down the different directions and show whats near by, quickly assisting with any confusion. Depending on the complexity it will be either map or text based, showing where it is and what are the different options in terms of direction.

Adapted Street Sign (Above) Modified with coloured dots to show when that part of a street is on a Cycle Line.



Handheld Map

Plan at home or anywhere en route Alongside the structural aspects of the system, a personal handheld map will also be included. It contains both types of map, the street map again focusing on a specific location, there being multiple editions covering the whole city, as well as further relevant advice such as cycling in congested areas, how to make the most out of the Cycle Line system and relevant contact information. These maps will primarily be used for planning journeys at home, rather

than at the cyclists nearest Hub if they use the system regularly or are just well prepared. It can also then be carried around with the cyclist acting as a slimmed down, mobile Hub, or just if the user becomes lost, however it is recommended to try and read the map whilst cycling. On this page is a quick example of what they consist of, I shall go into much greater detail in the next couple of pages.

Back Front & back of Handheld Maps Above and below to the left are the front and back of the maps respectively. It’ll go into further detail on the next page but these both contain all the information to plan a journey beforehand or sort yourself out if you find yourself a bit lost on-route.

Cover Due to the nature of the folding, the cover comprises of the title and small corner of the main map. Therefore the map becomes part image through this inclusion at face value when on display.



Handheld Map Analysing the Front

The front of the handheld map contains the high detail, borough wide version for planning the fine details of a journey. Parks & Rivers Particularly highlighted as these often offer scenic routes an alternative diversion may well be included in a journey accordingly.

Notable Buildings Many large or notable buildings have been drawn on to aid in recognition and orientation if the user is lost near one of them.

Cycle Lines All Cycle Lines are included in full detail, including where there are connections and crossovers.


Cycle-Friendly Roads


Back Cover Section

All points of interest listed including attractions, stations, neighbourhoods and main roads. The user can then locate it using the co-ordinate grid references.

As well as Cycle Lines and normal roads, all other recommended cycle-friendly roads have been included.

A series of icons have been developed in order to easily establish what features are available at different locations, especially stations and hospitals.

Alongside the title-comefront cover is the back cover info, summarising the Cycle Line system and how to get going on it.



Handheld Map

London Wide Map To give a wider perspective on the Cycle Lines across London for planning much longer journeys.

Analysing the Back

The back of the handheld map contains further more extensive information as well as a couple of different maps to aid a better understanding of the system as well as longer journey planning. Local Info A quick description of the local area on the borough wide map overleaf, including what is on offer and a bit of history.

Cycle Line Info Some brief information on the Cycle Line system as well as more general information on cycling in the city and some useful contact details.

Extra Cycling Info Some extra information that would be useful for cyclists such as road safety and keeping your bike safe.

Other Editions Map To show the area covered by the borough wide map relative to the rest of Greater London.



Signage Placement

Hub location Route signage

How it all fits together

As mentioned before, the Cycle Line system aims to organically blend into the cyclists journey. Although not always relevant to everyone’s journeys, particularly for someone on their daily commute or other highly familiar route, the Hubs shall be placed in easy to find locations that are appropriate for a cyclist to stop and assess their journey. These will be particularly near important junctions, on or off route where multiple Lines join or break off for instance, in case the cyclist

needs a quick reminder of their route. The smaller signs will appear on all relevant street corners and junctions keeping the either cyclist en route or highlighting somewhere off route. From here the size and amount of information on the sign will depend on the complexity of the junction. When off route, the signage will be less prolific, however it will regularly highlight the nearest section of route or just the area in which that route passes through. Simple Route Change

Hub Location

Backup Signage

Orientation Hub

The hubs are placed at all major destinations as well as key junctions along the route of the Cycle Lines.

All additional signage then serves to show the routes between hubs, enhance that journey through shortcuts and scenic routes or highlight notable features off route.

Next to the tube station and on-route, this quieter road means it would be a more appropriate place to stop.

For a simple change the signs simply the Line colour and direction headed.

More Major Change Off-Route Junction Not being on a major route this offers just a simple breakdown of available routes and where they’re heading.

When the main Line changes at a bigger junction the larger directional signage can highlight the change in direction as well as other routes and directions for shortcuts.



Construction Signage & Hubs

Wall Signs As the process is simply applied to sheets of metal, the sheets can then be used as normal and easily affixed to walls.

The signage shall be made using the process of vitreous enamelling. This process of firing colour on to sheet metal is perfect due to its versatility, easy maintenance, and fantastic longevity and resistance to vandalism and graffiti. Graphics can be screen printed onto a sheet of steel before the firing process gives the wide range of colours exceptional colour

stability. The metal than be applied throughout the city, being easily affixed to signposts and walls. This is quite a specialist process but is provided by A J Wells & Sons who have worked with various sectors within TfL and councils all over the country, examples of which is on the left hand side of the page.

Sign Posts The sheets could also be attached to preexisting signposts to integrate with other traffic signage.

Freestanding Signs The enabled sheets could also be built into a larger fitting such as a freestanding minilinth on the side of a road if there is more information than on the previous two signs.

The Finnish (right) The process results in very attractive bold colouring, highlighting the strength of the typography and imagery as well as a very appealing texture, the strength of which is dependant on the heating and can therefore be adjusted. For this signage however I would suggest selecting a smoother finish with just a hint of the process’ trademark texture in order to just hint at the process used.


Cycle Line - Implementation Guide  
Cycle Line - Implementation Guide  

Implemenntation guide for a proposed wayfinding system for cyclists in London